September 11th is a day the world drastically changed. It’s the Pearl Harbor of my generation. After being gathered in a Washington, D.C., high school gymnasium for mass, then being given the confusing announcement that there was an attack on the US, by way of the Twin Towers and the Pentagon…I was beyond shocked. And, we will never forget. I saw other students were crying; and concerned about their relatives that worked in, or near, each site. The sadness was pervasive. It touched many corners of the world, making the world feel really small.
With once Public Enemy No. 1, Osama Bin Laden, dead; at the hands of US government; it still doesn’t rectify what happened. Glad he’s not out there anymore, but no amount of killing, war, erosion of privacy, or destruction can replace the lives and peace of mind lost.
That day, and the next few weeks, people were glued to the TV, but no one had answers. And, no answers will ever be good enough. And, the information that has come out since, is as alarming as the occurrences on that day. During 9/11/2001 and the days that immediately followed, the only thing people could do was: watch; feel sad; feel concerned about the future; feel lucky to be alive; and, hope that America could recover.
Being choked-up at the prospect of having to choose to leap from the near top of a building instead of burning in a fire that was breathing down your back was a life changing moment for me. So was the knowledge that police officers, firefighters, and normal people were giving their own lives trying to save others…knowing people were buried alive in the rubble. But, some people used it as an excuse to be racist and violent. How? I guess we all deal with hardships in our own way. But, just taking the time to comprehend the enormous amount of lives lost in one day should make a person grow to heights where this will never be possible in the future. And, there are people still suffering from related illnesses, such as PSTD and lung related issues.
A war is/was being fought for years after 9/11, and lives are/were being lost because of what happened on this day many years ago. Are people who have birthdays or anniversaries, today, forever marred by the occurrences of this day–so long as they could appreciate the magnitude of the event? Can they truly celebrate? I feel as if that catastrophic incident was that powerful.
Being able to feel the pain and recognize the fallout in movies like Fahrenheit 9/11, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Flight 93, and World Trade Center pays homage to the lives lost, as does The Hurt Locker and Jarhead. Hopefully a time comes when the world and especially America will truly be able to recover from this day.